Fall update

At the desk of the Vice President's ceremonial office in the
Eisenhower Building, on the grounds of the White House
Some recent highlights from the world of EMI and the Crawfords...

* This Fall, we led project teams to help ministries in the following countries: Benin, Kenya, Nigeria, 4 trips to Uganda, Cameroon, Madagascar and India. Most of those trips went out in September, with the project work being completed now in time for the current project semester to end in about a month's time.

* This morning during our Friday morning sharing time, EMI staffer Rex Barber shared about the trip he led to Tenwek Hospital in Western Kenya back in September. EMI has a long history with Tenwek Hospital, having sent many teams to their campus in rural Kenya to help with the various stages of that hospital's ongoing expansion. Franklin Graham once said of Tenwek, "Tenwek Hospital is one of the greatest evangelical outreaches I know of anywhere in the world today." After EMI's design work on this project is complete, Tenwek will begin construction on a new surgery building that will result in the number of surgeries they perform each year expanding from 3000 to 6000!
Rex and team sharing about their Tenwek
project trip this morning. Many of you helped
raise funds for this project this past summer by
supporting us in EMI's annual Golf Marathon.
* I traveled to Calgary in early October to take part in our annual Director's Conference. Each year, the leaders of all the EMI offices gather for a week at one of the office locations to discuss all sorts of things - vision, planning, coordination, new initiatives, new offices, staff needs and issues, as well as lessons learned. Though it was busy, it was a great week!

The EMI Directors up in Canada for the annual Director's
Conference - we took a 1/2-day to go see nearby Banff!
* Alisha and I traveled to Washington DC a few weeks ago to take part in EMI's annual 'EMI Network' Conference. Around 150 people were there to take part in technical training sessions, culture training sessions, learn more about how to join EMI as a volunteer, intern or staff, and to connect with other like-minded relief and development folks. Alisha led a session on being a wife and mom overseas, and I led a session on structural design in the majority world.

It was our first time to DC, so we went a day early to walk
the famous mall...7 miles of walking in all that day.
We had a guest speaker come speak one night. He actually is
somewhat of a chaplain to the Supreme Court Justices...a very
interesting man and different kind of mission story!
I spoke a little at various points of the conference.
Our CEO John Dallmann was the keynote speaker on Saturday
night. He did a great job.
Alisha led a round-table session on raising a family overseas.
* EMI currently has 15 new staff families in the process of joining staff in one of our offices around the world.
What does it take to move a family of 4 overseas to work with
EMI? This is the luggage for the Reinhardt family whom I
picked up from Denver Int'l Airport last Friday. The Reinhardts
were returning after spending nearly a year in Uganda.

* We now have families who are currently overseas studying language and/or preparing to launch our next 3 offices to open in Senegal, Nicaragua and Cambodia.

* The Fall soccer season is almost wrapping up - I coached Graysen's U11 team, and Brodie and Jonah played on the same team with a new Christian soccer club that started a few years ago. Brodie and Jonah also referee now - each working 3-4 games per weekend.

Graysen, doing what he loves most.
Coaching Graysen's team is a lot of fun. We have
a special group of boys - they are some very talented
players, but more importantly, they are good boys
who come from great families.
* Alisha has been substitute teaching at Graysen's school 1-2 days a week, as well as leading online fitness accountability groups and working 8-10 hours a week in the EMI Finance department.

* Our pet rabbits Mildred and Murphy eat hay nonstop and sometimes a few of the pine chips in their litter box. They are glad to see the cold weather arriving (our first snow here was Monday - we got 3").
Mildred (top) and Murphy, having a 'play date'.
They typically stay in their own cages, which
we have situated side by side. Murphy is a clean
freak so he doesn't care for Mildred's 'pig sty'
approach to life.
* It's looking like I will be leading a project team to Honduras in March to help design a new ministry center and clinic for a local ministry about two hours north of Tegucigalpa. More details to come...

A few more pictures from our DC trip:

My long-time friend Brodie, with wife Jenn and kids Joe,
Noelle and S. Brad. Brodie is our Brodie's namesake, and looks
after the VP 
Brodie got us inside the White House complex! A marine is
stationed at the front door of the West Wing.
We got very lucky on our timing - as we were leaving the complex,
the SS stopped us momentarily in a small gated area with about
4 or 5 other people trying to leave. We noticed that the general public
outside the secure area had been cleared from the area...then,
after a couple of minutes, along came the President walking by -
followed by his motorcade of about 25 specially armored limo's,
suburbans, armored cars and ambulances. It was very impressive
to witness from 20 feet away!
Probably my favorite thing to see inside was the Supreme Court
building - one of the most influential buildings in the world.
On top of the overwhelmingly large contingency of Secret
Service agents in and around the capitol mall, we even
saw Paul Blart, Mall Cop leading a segway tour for some
guests. ;)
Inside Ford Theatre, where Abraham Lincoln was shot. The box
shown beyond here is the suite where he was shot. Growing up on
the West Coast, ialways seemed to me like Lincoln lived 500
years ago, so 
seeing that such a famous and key place in the American
history story still existed was mind-boggling to me.


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